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The trial of Jesus before the High Priest



THE TRIAL OF JESUS BEFORE THE HIGH PRIEST
After Jesus was arrested in the garden of Gethsemane, he was led to Caiaphas, the High Priest. The members of the Sanhedrin were also present. 

They wanted false witnesses to testify against him but they could not get anybody. Finally, two false witnesses came out and accused Jesus of saying he was going to destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days.

The High Priest asked Jesus whether he had any answers to give in respect of the accusations against him but Jesus said nothing. The High Priest invoked the name of God and asked him whether he was the son of God. Then Jesus said “You have said so.”   Then Jesus added that “After this, you will see the Son of man at the right hand of power and coming with the clouds of heaven.”

The High Priest tore his clothes and said Jesus had blasphemed so there was no need for witnesses before he is sentenced. He asked the Council what they proposed as their punishment for Jesus and they said Jesus deserved to die. They spat on his face, struck him and slapped him. Then asked him to prophesy who slapped him.

Early in the morning, the Sanhedrin met again and decided to take Jesus to Pontus Pilate for another trial.



WHAT STEPS CAN BE TAKEN TO ENSURE FAIR TRIAL
1. The judiciary must be independent of all political interference.
2. Judges must be well paid so that there room for bribery and corruption is narrowed.
3. Judges must be assured that their jobs are secured. There is security of tenure.
4. The judges must be bold and fearless in the exercise of their mandate.
5. The individual must be allowed to express his/her views on all cases as much as the law allows.

WHY THE JEWISH AUTHORITIES TAKE JESUS TO PONTUS PILATE
1. The Jewish authorities are not allowed by Roman laws to sentence anybody to death.
2. Even if the Jewish authorities did sentence Jesus to death, they could not have carried out the sentence.
3. Pontus Pilate was know to be a corrupt governor, so the Jewish authorities knew they could manipulate Pilate to do what they required, which is to sentence Jesus to death.

SAMPLE QUESTIONS
1. a. Narrate the story of the trial of Jesus
    b. In which three ways can fair trial be ensured in your country?
2. a. Describe the trial of Jesus before the Jewish authorities.
    b. Why did the Jewish authorities take Jesus to Pontus Pilate for another trial.



OBJECTIVE QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS ON THE TRIALS OF JESUS
Test One
1.         During the trial of Jesus, the Jews preferred that Pilate should release
a.         Bar-Jesus
b.         Barsabas
c.         Bartholomew
d.         Barabbas

2.         Which of the following false charges were leveled against Jesus before Caiaphas the high priest? He
a.         Claimed to be Christ, the son of God
b.         Forbade the people from paying tax to Caesar
c.         Forbade the authorities from exchanging money in the temple
d.         Claiming to be the king of Jews.

3.         According to St. Luke, which of the following did not feature in the trial of Jesus before Pilate and Herod?
a.         Pilate did not find Jesus guilty as charged
b.         Jesus asserted that He was Christ, the son of God
c.         Pilate asked Jesus whether He was the king of the Jews
d.         Herod treated Jesus with contempt.

4.         Pilate and Herod suddenly became friends because.
a.         Herod sent Jesus back to Pilate
b.         Jesus performed miracle for Herod
c.         Pilate referred Jesus to Herod who had wanted to see him
d.         Jesus belonged to Herod’s Jurisdiction

5.         Which of the following did Pilate ask Jesus during the trial?
a.         “What is it that these men testify against you”?
b.         “Are you Jesus, the prophet from Galilee”?
c.         “I adjure you by God; tell me if you are the Christ”
d.         “Are you the King of the Jews”?

6.         The trial of Jesus was transferred from the High Priest’s court to Pilate because
a.         Jesus lodged an appeal to the high court.
b.         The High Priest has no power to impose death penalty on Jesus
c.         It gave the high Priest the opportunity to reconcile with the governor
d.         The governor sent troops to stop the trial as a riot was threatening.

7.         At the final trial of Jesus before Pilate, the notorious robber who was released instead of Jesus was
a.         Barnabas
b.         Barsabas
c.         Barabbas
d.         Bartholomew

8.         The final trial of Jesus was presided over by
a.         Pilate
b.         Herod
c.         Caiaphas
d.         The high priest

9.         Herod was happy to receive Jesus for trial because
a . Herod planned to release Jesus
b.         Pilate and Herod were friends
c.         He expected to see a sign
d.         Pilate had communicated with Herod

10.       What allegation was raised against Jesus during His trial before Pilate?
a.         Changing the laws of Moses
b.         Claiming to be the son of God
c.         Being a friend of tax collectors.
d.         Forbidden people to pay tribute to Caesar

Test Two
1.         The trial of Jesus on the eve of the Passover was irregular because
a.         Jesus was not a criminal
b.         The law did not allow such trials
c.         It was not thorough
d.         The leader worked under cover of darkness

2.         When the Roman soldiers put a crown of thorns on Jesus heads, they were
a.         Using it as mockery for a royal diadem
b.         Proclaiming him king
c.         Suggesting that Jesus deserved royal status
d.         Echoing his royal status

3.         Pontius Pilate Presided over Jesus’ trial in order to
a.         Investigate the Jewish charge of treason
b.         Save him from the Jewish charge of blasphemy
c.         Punish him for his Messianic claims
d.         Find out if he was the king of the Jews

4.         Jesus allowed himself to be arrested and taken away for trial in order to
a.         Show that he was law abiding
b.         Plead for his righteousness
c.         Fulfill the scriptures
d.         Prove his disciples faithfulness

5.         At the trial of Jesus, Caiaphas tore his garment to show that
a.         He was unhappy with Jesus answer
b.         Jesus must die on the cross
c.         A blasphemy had been committed
d.         He was not happy with the witness

6.         Before Pilate, Jesus was accused of having claimed to be all the following except
a.         Son of God
b.         Messiah
c.         King of the Jews
d.         Servant of God

7.         Pilate was appointed the prosecutor of
a.         Galilee
b.         Judea
c.         Jerusalem
d.         Decapolis

8.         When the High Priest asked if he was the Messiah, Jesus spoke about the
a.         Son of man coming in his kingdom
b.         Suffering Messiah
c.         Resurrection of Christ after his crucifixion
d.         Restoration of the kingdom

9.         When Pilate asked Jesus, “Are you the king of the Jews? He replied
a.         “My kingdom is not of this world’
b.         The kingdom of God suffered violence
c.         “For this cause I was born’
d.         ‘You have said so’.

10.       During the trial of Jesus, He was taken to the praetorium by the soldiers in order to
a.         Continue with their investigations
b.         Stage a mock coronation
c.         Torture him to confess
d.         Detain him until the Jews departed


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